posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 10:34 AM
I have been following the shuttle's mission and thought this was interesting.
NASA Tracks Mystery Object Near Atlantis Shuttle
19 September 2006 10:55 a.m. EDT
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – NASA mission controllers are tracking a mystery object hovering between the space shuttle Atlantis and Earth, and traveling
at roughly the same speed as the orbiter, agency officials said Tuesday.
“Right now they’re just tying to figure out exactly what it is, how far away it is,” NASA spokesperson Kimberly Harle told SPACE.com. “It’s
pretty much assessing the whole situation.”
Harle said that at 2:45 a.m. EDT (0645 GMT), just after Atlantis completed a check of its reaction control thrusters, the instrumentation and
communications officer at NASA’s shuttle Mission Control room at Johnson Space Center noted an object between the orbiter and Earth, and traveling
at about the same speed of the spacecraft.
Flight controllers are now using video cameras mounted along Atlantis’ robotic arm and payload bay to survey visible areas of the orbiter, including
its wing leading edges and other vital heat shield areas, Harle said.
“Everything is still under assessment,” Harle said.
For now, Atlantis’ STS-115 shuttle crew will not stow their Ku-band antenna – the primary video and data link to Earth – to allow flight
controllers to continue to study the object.
Mission Update by;